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Peteyd

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Reply with quote  #1 
I recently found out my 11 year old pit bull Elvis has lymphoma and Cushings. Our Vet said he had about 4 weeks if we are lucky. I’m wrecked and don’t know how to deal with this. He is my everything, I love him so much . The thought of having to put him down makes me ill. I need support and advice, I am suffering from intense depression and anxiety.

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Peteyd

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Tankie12

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Reply with quote  #2 
I’m sorry, that’s devastating news. Come here as often as you can. You are going through something intensely painful and you’re going to need to vent as this process continues. My one piece of advise is going to be the hardest one to follow right now because all you’ve going to want to do is cry. You will be shocked how 4 weeks will slip through your fingers and while you’re crying at the thought of his death you will lose precious moments. Spend your time doing things he loves. Go buy those cheeseburgers you know he’s not supposed to have. Take pictures and videos. Soak up every moment while he’s here to throw your arms around him and breathe in his sweet doggie smell. Go take those long walks while he’s still eager to go everywhere and enjoys everything. Be like him and enjoy his life❣️There will be plenty of time for tears later, hugs,,,,,
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Blue_Laura

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Reply with quote  #3 
Focus on him right now and make sure he is comfortable. Take tons of videos and pics. When the time comes, you will know and be able to help him cross. Then you can grieve. I lost my 10 year old sheltie Blue to GI lymphoma. He had a tumor in his small intestine and was wasting away. Prednisone helped for a short time. One morning, he would not get up because he was in such pain and I knew that was the day. Knowing I had to relieve him of pain helped me make the decision. Blue was my life. I don't usually respond on this forum but something about your post touched a nerve. Be strong for him. You will not be putting him down. You will be lifting him up.


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Peteyd

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Reply with quote  #4 
Elvis is my life too, I am trying to be strong but I fall apart often. He is losing weight and is much weaker. I am taking this Friday off and will spend a long weekend with him. I am having a hard time just getting through the day. He is such a beautiful soul and has taught me so much , I love him so much, I don’t want him to go.
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Blue_Laura

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Reply with quote  #5 

I love him so much.  I don’t want him to go.” I know.  I have walked in your shoes.  You are not ready for this and yet it is happening.  How can you say goodbye to a dog you love so much?  Losing a child could not be any harder.  You are strong, otherwise you would not be going through this.  It is ok to fall apart.  I remember going for drives, so I could leave the house and then I would lose it.  Scream and sob where Blue could not hear me.  I did not want him to know how upset I was.  I just wanted his remaining time to be peaceful.  I got through it by focusing on him and trying my best not to think about myself and what was to come.  I made him scrambled eggs, the easiest protein to digest and fed him in small increments throughout the day. I bet Elvis would like that.

“He is a beautiful soul and has taught me so much.”  You already know, he is a soul in a body.  The body will die, but his soul will not.  I think that was my lesson in all of this. 

 

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Millie18

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Reply with quote  #6 
Peteyd,

I'm so sorry for the frightening news. I will just repeat what others have said regarding enjoying the time you have with your Elvis.

I completely understand your heartache. I received the same news as you with my 8 yr old Millie and was  given 2-4 months with the Prednisolone, but in reality it ended up being barely 6 weeks that we had.

We went to the beach, the duck park, swan pond. If Elvis is still up for it, do all of his favorite things and take pictures and videos. I asked a neighbor to take pictures and video of us together and I am so happy we did. I look back fondly on those hours together and that last week was one of my favorites even though she was very slow, she still liked being around new smells and sights

Enjoy every single moment. This will be your new normal and you will have to keep adjusting to the changes. It's very stressful, I know.

When Millie stopped wanting to eat, I hand fed her, which I felt honored to do for her. I made smoothies, I cooked lots of different things for her and caring for my friend was very special. I had to let go of the expectation of who she used to be and accept who she was in those moments. Once I was able to do that there was a beauty in caring for her.

I'll be praying for you and your sweet Elvis

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Millie18

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Reply with quote  #7 
Like Lynn said, feed him those cheeseburgers if he wants them. Whatever he loves eating double up on them since he's losing weight.

That was the one mistake I made. While she was feeling well I fed her normal portions. I should have increased her food intake. Luckily she didn't lose weight until the very end, but just keep it in mind.

If his lymph nodes are swollen I massaged them several times a day to help prevent the lymphatic system from clogging. I placed more emphasis on the rears to avoid the swollen hocks that can appear. Mill's rear hocks only started swelling on her very last day. 

I'm sorry if it's too much info. Massaging Elvis is also a way for you to focus on him, spend time on him and away from your pain.

The more I threw myself into Mill's care, the more empowered I felt that we were going to fight this crappy disease together and buy more time. In between I would break down sobbing and tell her how sorry I was that I just didn't know she had been so sick (clear tests for years, even a few months prior to the diagnosis). I believe she had been sick ever since I had her. From zero to stage 5 in 6 months is crazy.

Enjoy every second with your wonderful friend

There are so many wonderful people here to support you. Please come back as often as you need to

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Peteyd

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Reply with quote  #8 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Millie18
Peteyd,

I'm so sorry for the frightening news. I will just repeat what others have said regarding enjoying the time you have with your Elvis.

I completely understand your heartache. I received the same news as you with my 8 yr old Millie and was  given 2-4 months with the Prednisolone, but in reality it ended up being barely 6 weeks that we had.

We went to the beach, the duck park, swan pond. If Elvis is still up for it, do all of his favorite things and take pictures and videos. I asked a neighbor to take pictures and video of us together and I am so happy we did. I look back fondly on those hours together and that last week was one of my favorites even though she was very slow, she still liked being around new smells and sights

Enjoy every single moment. This will be your new normal and you will have to keep adjusting to the changes. It's very stressful, I know.

When Millie stopped wanting to eat, I hand fed her, which I felt honored to do for her. I made smoothies, I cooked lots of different things for her and caring for my friend was very special. I had to let go of the expectation of who she used to be and accept who she was in those moments. Once I was able to do that there was a beauty in caring for her.

I'll be praying for you and your sweet Elvis


Not sure if I am responding correctly. Thank you for the great advice and for your support, I really feel like I’m losing my mind. I am afraid that I am mourning him and wasting the precious time we still have. I try to stay upbeat around him and often fall short.. I will try and fall apart in my car coming from work so as not to let him see me upset when I get home. I am taking some time off work and will take him for a swim. He still love to walk but is becoming weaker and it is breaking my heart. I am cooking him pork and potatoes fresh every other day from a recipe we got from a nutritionists. I need to feed him small meals as he will not keep it down otherwise.. He is hungry a lot from the Cushings. And I believe the Prednisone also stimulates the appetite. We are feeding almost every 4 hours and he needs to be take out every few hours to pee. He is wetting his bed too and this also makes me ache inside. I am doing what I can to insure that he keeps his dignity. He was a specimen of muscular beauty when he was 4 an 5 years old. I can’t stop crying. It takes my breath away sometimes. Thank you all for your support.


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Millie18

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Reply with quote  #9 
I'm so sorry. It's heartbreaking to watch our friends deteriorate so quickly.

You're doing everything in your power right now. Just keep doing what you are doing. Walks will get shorter, he'll eat less and less, but keep going, just keep maintaining some semblance of routine for him.

Cry and scream in the shower, in the car, how ever you can get it out and not go crazy while he is still with you.

Yes, the Pred stimulates both eating and drinking. He'll need to pee more from it as well. After taking him out every few hours also get wee wee pads to put in his bed.

Have a 2nd bed ready and towels and wash cloths when he gets up after wetting the bed. Having everything ready to clean him will stress you less, which in turn will be better for him. Just try to adapt to the changes as you go, not making a big deal of it so he doesn't pick up on your anxiety. Just business as usual caring for a sick pup. I know it makes your head spin. Just do the best you can.

I was up every few hours to take Mill out to pee and poop. In addition to going potty it kept her moving and strengthened her muscles so she could continue to get up on her own.

I'm very happy that he has an appetite, that's great.

I know it's the worst possible feeling because I just went through it when I received the news on June 1st, but there were also amazing moments that came out of caring for my baby girl. It created an even stronger connection with her.

Just keep loving on him and showering him with kisses and talk to him. He knows you love him and are doing everything you can for him.

Sending you strength and hugs

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Diana

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Sampson

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Reply with quote  #10 
I'm sorry my dear. The sad fact is that we all have a set time but you weren't expecting this and you've been caught off guard along with having your heart broken. This is a time when you have to put it all out of your mind and live for the moment. Any one of us could be killed in an accident tomorrow. That sounds awful but it is the reality of life. You have time now with Elvis. Take advantage of it! I think you're doing the right things and good on you, crying in your car away from him and taking time off work (so important because you won't get that time back) I know how hard it but you first need to try and accept the situation and soon as possible so that you can move forward and enjoy this time together. Maybe that means you go somewhere on your own and just scream, stomp the ground or anything that you can do to release the anger and disbelief so you will then be able to make this a fun time for Elvis and for you also. I feel so sorry for what you have to face. It's not fair! Allow yourself to be angry and cry and then go back and play with Elvis, feed him yummy treats and make this a time filled with happy memories. Don't let these awful diseases cheat you out of enjoying the time you have left with your dear boy. You can do it!
Warm regards,
Sam
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Blue_Laura

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Reply with quote  #11 
I keep thinking about you and Elvis.  Below is an excerpt from a journal I started writing in when this was happening:

"I can't tell by looking at him that he has cancer.  He is still beautiful.  My heart breaks each time I look at him.  The prednisone has given him his appetite back for now.  He is so weak and I can feel his bones, like his flesh is sinking in.  I can't imagine him not being here"

Everything happened so fast.  It is hard to process the diagnosis, let alone the time remaining.  I remember trying to smile and sound positive when I talked to him.  Tears would be running down my face and my heart felt like a lead weight in my chest.  

Elvis looks like a magnificent pit bull in his pic.  They are personality and solid muscle.  It must be so hard to see him in a weakened state.  Blue had so much fur that I could not see how thin he really was. GI lymphoma is the worst since it prevents them from digesting food properly.  

I wish there was something I could write to make this better.  I understand what you mean about not wanting to mourn him before he is gone.  I would tell myself to live in this moment, appreciate this moment.  Dogs live in the moment and do not fear the future.  Have a special long weekend with Elvis and take those pictures!
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Peteyd

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Reply with quote  #12 
I can’t believe that this is happening to my little buddy. I am so sad. It’s too much to handle, I can’t believe that it hurts this much. I feel like there is something wrong with me for being this upset. It seems like just yesterday that he was this little puppy. I continue to try and keep it together in his presence. Thank you Blue Laura, and all who have responded. The suggestions are all sound advice, applying them is difficult.. I am scared. Please God help

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Peteyd

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Blue_Laura

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Reply with quote  #13 

I felt the exact same way. How can this be happening to my boy?  I was in some alternate universe where everything was wrong and I just needed to figure out how to get back home.  Life had a very surreal quality to it.  It is normal to be very upset.  This may be one of the most difficult things you ever experience.  It has been over a year for me and I am at peace with everything now, but it took some time.

Puppy Elvis is adorable.  Those ears!

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Peteyd

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Reply with quote  #14 
He is wasting. I am feeding him a half to 3/4 of a cup of home cooked food every 3 or 4 hours. If I feed him larger amounts he throws it up. He is still eating but he doesn’t look like my Elvis, he is so skinny it is hard to see. We are considering ending this but I can not make a date for this. It is causing me tremendous anxiety. He is very quiet. I love him so much. It hurts to see this happening. I’m lost.

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Peteyd

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Peteyd

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Reply with quote  #15 
My beautiful beautiful boy.
Elvis

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Peteyd

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